Heather Corinna replies:
My boyfriend and I have been trying to have sex and it just doesn't work. I'm a virgin and he isn't. I think he's too big for me. Or is it the position? Any suggestions?
Unless your boyfriend's penis is shaped like a tuna can, his size or yours are probably not the primary issue.
For starters, when you're using your condom (because I know anyone writing me surely isn't a dummy and is therefore using a condom), use a generous amount of extra lubricant that is latex-safe. You can buy it where you buy condoms, and good brands are KY, Astroglide, Aqua Lube, and the like.
Of equal importance, if not more, is that you are relaxed and aroused and taking your time. You need to be enjoying yourself. If he's just ringing the doorbell and then it's "wham!" it isn't going to work, and it also isn't going to be enjoyable for you at all. Get in the groove first with hugging, kissing, and mutual masturbation or oral sex: whatever makes you sexually aroused and feels really good. As far as positions, most women find that the standard missionary position (where you're on your back on the bottom, and he's on top), or with you on top works best the first time around.
Understand that the vagina isn't a passive object: it's a muscular tube, and it's one that tenses or relaxes depending on what's going on. So, if you're not very aroused and very relaxed before and during intercourse, then vaginal entry is going to be very difficult, and even if it "works," not particularly pleasant for you. When a woman is highly aroused, a penis of just about any size will fit just fine, even if you may find that shallower or deeper penetration feels better to you with certain partners.
Above and beyond all else, is he starting slow and gradual? Is he patient? Is he asking you questions about how you're feeling, and/or are you offering up that information? Have you both let the steam out of all of this and not put too much pressure on yourselves? All of these things are really key.
Know that first intercourse doesn't have to be -- and often isn't -- an all-in-one-shot deal. If it's uncomfortable the first time, try a little, then do something else and try again another day. Just like it sometimes takes a while to ease your mind into what it is to have intercourse, it sometimes takes a while to ease your body -- and the dynamic of your relationship -- into it as well.